The much-rumored title fight between reigning UFC bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling and former two-division UFC champion Henry Cejudo is finally signed, sealed, and delivered.
According to a social media post by UFC on Friday night, Sterling vs. Cejudo is officially headed to UFC 288 on May 6 live on ESPN+ pay-per-view (PPV) from inside Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. It will be the first time UFC is returning to the venue since a welterweight clash between Colby Covington and Robbie Lawler headlined a UFC event back in Aug. 2019.
The bantamweight belt will be on the line in New Jersey!! @FunkmasterMMA vs @HenryCejudo will officially be the #UFC288 main event!— UFC (@ufc) March 11, 2023
[ ️ Tickets on sale next Friday, March 17th ] pic.twitter.com/cDYB1qbH89
We’re coming back to Newark, NJ for #UFC288! Tickets go on sale next Friday March 17th pic.twitter.com/KkCCSL3z0M— danawhite (@danawhite) March 11, 2023
Sterling, 33, is coming off a second-round TKO victory over former UFC bantamweight champion T.J. Dillashaw at UFC 280 to retain his title. However, Dillashaw was injured during the fight and many are hoping Sterling can turn in a no-questions-asked title defense his next time out. That may be very difficult on paper as “Funk Master” is now set to welcome Cejudo back to the Octagon for the first time since May 2020.
Cejudo, 36, has been sidelined for nearly three years after retiring from the sport following his TKO finish and subsequent UFC bantamweight title defense over Dominick Cruz at UFC 249. “Triple C” has been plotting his return ever since and will now step right back into a title fight two months from now. Cejudo has been busy running his Fight Ready gym and training the likes of Jon Jones, but now it’s his turn to make the walk to the Octagon again and prove he’s still a top fighter.
UFC 288’s fight card currently features the below matchups:
Charles Oliveira vs. Beneil Dariush
Bryce Mitchell vs. Jonathan Pearce
Jessica Andrade vs. Yan Xiaonan
Kron Gracie vs. Charles Jourdain
Marina Rodriguez vs. Virna Jandiroba
Devin Clark vs. Kennedy Nzechukwu
Andre Petroski vs. Armen Petrosyan
Nate Maness vs. Zhalgas Zhumagulov
Khaos Williams vs. Rolando Bedoya
Johnny Muñoz Jr. vs. Daniel Santos
Stick with Mania for more UFC 288 fight card news and updates.